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Doc's Blog

Welcome to Diana 'The Doc' Thomas' official Blog ... A radio interviewer once referred to Diana as being a 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana has indeed filled the shoes (or fire boots) as truly being America's foremost 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana is known for being somewhat controversial at times... She writes the truth... Diana tells it like it is about drag racing and other topical issues-- You've seen Diana 'The Doc' Thomas on our DVDs, with Bret Kepner on ESPN, and in all the major media... Don't miss your opportunity to read her daily blog right here at DRAG RACING UNDERGROUND... Diana's blog gives you a daily dose of truth and reality with heart... Diana's unique and refreshing perspective is unlike anything else on the drag racing web... We strongly recommend that you bookmark this page now... Be sure you check in daily to experience & enjoy Diana's unique insight, worldly wisdom and perspective...
Yesterday and today at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, the type of racing competition going on is quite different than what you'd usually expect at New Jersey's premier "world class" motorsports facility. It's the "TOUGH MUDDER" event. Instead of racers getting plenty of traction and bite on E'Town's incredibly well prepped drag strip, there's a whole bunch of folks attempting to slip and slide through the mud over grueling obstacle courses designed by British Special Forces. This is NOT your typical lame 5k or 10k run (Yawn!), this is the real deal of physical endurance. Simply being capable of completing the TOUGH MUDDER is a badge of courage. About 78% of the people who enter this competition actually have the stamina to complete it. If you want to see the world's toughest of mudders, I suggest you make tracks today to Old Bridge Township Raceway Park... Switching gears... Yesterday was Bruce Larson's "USA-1 DRAGFEST" at his Pennsylvania barn. One of Drag Racing Underground's own resident cyber geeks Gary "Bud" Luske managed to attend, and said it was a great day of waxing nostalgic. Of course I was obligated to the recording studio for Big Stick duties, and was unable to fire up my T-Bird roadster and make the drive to Larson's. As I told y'all in yesterday's blog, I admire Bruce Larson because he isn't your "stereotypical" 60s and 70s drag racing legend. Bruce Larson ain't a drunk, or a druggie, or a reckless womanizer, like the cantankerous geezers on the internet insist all our drag racing stars of years gone by once were-- No-Siree-Bob!-- Bruce Larson is a prime example that upstanding morals and ethics definitely DO have a place in drag racing-- It ain't all sleazeballs and creeps. There were many racers back in the day who were decent stock like Bruce Larson. Gary claimed that the vibe at the gathering was so much fun that he didn't mind Larson's strict no booze and no smoking policy. And of course Gary's health benefited from the policy...

Let's be real. Let's face the facts of the matter. If you ever bother to check out the "nostalgia" drag racing scene as it's portrayed by crusty and cantankerous geezers on the internet, the imagery of it all appears to be dank, dark and sorely sleazily depressing. Old timers who still have a gasp of breath left and the strength to type on their keyboard, very rarely (if ever!), talk about the actual racing from back in the day, oh no, instead, the web is polluted with sick stories of the many illicit and illegal drugs that the "Gooseface Gunzos" and "Jungle Jerrys" did, or how they used their racing rigs to transport illegal drugs from coast to coast-- and how many bottles of beer they drank while recklessly plowing down Rt. 66 en route to another match race, or how many under-age "chicks" they had anonymous, illicit, unprotected sex with, etc, etc, etc... It's just plain GROTESQUE!!... You'd think that drag racing of years gone by was ONLY for low-lifes and the most vile of vegabonds-- Well, thankfully, we have my personal drag racing hero, Bruce Larson's "USA-1 Dragfest" to prove that the cesspool induced image of what drag racing used to be is definitely NOT the complete story! Bruce Larson was successfully drag racing in the 60s and 70s, the era that internet geezers vehemently insist that drag racing was all about just being the biggest creep you could possibly be and not much else (sic). Fortunately, those of us in the know are aware that Bruce Larson was one of the many racers of the day who DID NOT subscribe to the low-life lifestyle, and Bruce won many races and gained lots of fame. Bruce is living proof that the nostalgia internet snerts are wrong. That said, today is Bruce's "USA-1 Dragfest" at his Stoney Creek Barn located at 600 Stoney Creek Drive in Dauphin, Pennsylvania. It's a family oriented gathering where there's nostalgia cars on display, bench racing, photo album sharing, movies, videos, and lots of wholesome activities to keep you and your family busy and entertained. It's a good time for all attending. And, uh, oh yeah, Bruce "USA-1" Larson doesn't permit any alcoholic beverages or smoking on the premises...

Today is "FEEDBACK FRIDAY", meaning I deal with emails that my assistant Stephanie and I receive from readers regarding my most recent blogs... Before I get to your feedback, I'd like to acknowledge today being Veterans Day. An awful lot of Marines (thousands) read my blog, largely because of all the work I do behind the scenes for the Semper Fi gang. I want y'all to know how much I appreciate those who've served in ALL branches of service... Today is 11/11/11 on the calendar, now deemed "National Metal Day". Inspired by the 80s SPINAL TAP movie, where the bass player claimed to turn his amp up to "11" for maximum volume. Some of you might remember BIG STICK's ode to metal music titled "The Devil's Jukebox"-- A song where we paid tribute to the metal music art form. The song inspired "The Devil's Jukebox", a nifty box set of records released by Blast First/Mute (that's now worth a whole lotta money), and it inspired NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS, the big British music publication to promote a huge contest to win a REAL "Devil's Jukebox", completely stocked with all the records from the box set of the same name-- It was a full-size functional jukebox modified to "Devil" trim, complete with horns, tail and other groovy cosmetic devilishly features. So nobody can ever say that BIG STICK hasn't given metal music its due props... Switching gears... Let's get to some feedback... Many of you responded to my blog about Kansas City International Raceway, claiming that there still might be hope to save the facility from getting bulldozed into the abyss-- I hope y'all are right... Some of you still didn't agree with my positive take on the "Countdown To The Championship" points race. Even though there's plenty of drama and close competition in the points series leading up to this weekend's finals at Pomona, there's those of you who still protest the points policy... And last but not least, I received a flood of emails congratulating me for once again being the most read female blogger on the drag racing internet-- I'm grateful for your support, and I promise to continue my duty of providing y'all with the most "colorful", "soulful", "interesting", and "unpredictable" blog in all of modern motorsports... I really do love y'all for being the best friends a gal could ever ask for... Keep those emails comin', whether you agree or disagree with my opinions, I'm genuinely interested in your feedback... I just ask that you please keep your emails short and to the point, no rambling please...

Every few months our resident geeks who we employ here at Drag Racing Underground do a thorough evaluation of our web site's "traffic". For those of you over the age of thirty, "traffic" is the number of people who visit the site, it's a matter of evaluating how many people read which particular web pages and when they do so-- Basically, it's what older generations used to refer to as "statistics" or "ratings". That said, I am once again very flattered to announce that the number of people checking in daily to read this blog is going through the proverbial roof!! Hits on this page continue to escalate up to the high heavens. Once again, you wonderful folks have made me the most read female blogger on the entire drag racing internet. I love you all for your incredible loyalty. I know there's lots of choices on the drag racing internet, many web sites vying for your attention, and the fact that so many of you from the drag racing community AND from the so-called "rock/alternative music community" choose to make reading my blog as part of your daily cyber routine makes me happy as a clam at high tide. And yes, I know there's still some "haters" out there, bigoted, crusty, cantankerous elderly men who don't believe a woman has any place at the drag strip, I get that, I realize that there's a small minority of ghastly guys these days who are still stuck in the stone age, and just can't fathom the idea of females doing the kind of journalistic work that I do-- I'm aware there's still some cavemen among us in desperate need of "sensitivity training" and "anger management classes", but hey, thankfully the numbers of those sort of dinosaurs is rapidly declining, as the younger and more "open-minded" generations are becoming the "new majority" of the drag racing community... Here at Drag Racing Underground we're thankful that more folks are reading my blog, and that more folks are buying our DVDs, even in this troubled economy-- The Drag Racing Underground now stands as the most popular and successful independent form of alternative drag racing media bar none. Thanks again. It's all because of YOU. And I genuinely love y'all for your continued support...

Many of us remember when NHRA introduced their "Countdown to the Championship" points policy. Internet based keyboard equipped naysayers were wrapped around the block wielding protest signs and forming angry "drum circles", claiming their hate for the revised approach to NHRA's yearly points race policy. All of a sudden there's silence on the protest line (uh, the internet cable lines), as NHRA's 2011 season nears an end. There's nothing to really complain about because there's plenty of last minute points drama building for the 2011 finale. Going into this weekend's Pomona finals, the points race in Funny Car is extremely close and unsettled, Top Fuel still has a total of five drivers who could possibly become the champion, Pro Stock Motorcycle is still up for grabs (although y'all know that I'm rooting for local hero Eddie Krawiec). Admittedly, the Pro Stock Car championship was clinched a couple of weeks ago in Vegas by Jason Line, but keep in mind, the P/S class has a long history of racers claiming the "factory hot rod" category before the final event of the season, this has been a pattern in NHRA drag racing that certainly predates the revised "Countdown" format. I want to see Pedregon pummel the Pomono Flopper field and walk away with the championship. In Top Fuel I'd like to see Del Worsham get the title, for no other reason than I've always admired Worsham's purist drive for drag racing, there just seems to be something so pure about the way he approaches the sport... Switching gears... George Clinton and his Parliment Funkadelic band are coming to the Starland Ballroom on Saturday, Feb 11th. An old friend of Big Stick's, Ted Currier, co-produced Clinton's "Atomic Dog" hit. Ted Currier is the fellow who provided us (Big Stick) with the hypnotizing drum track we used on our "Crack Attack" hit. Anyways, all that trivia aside, nobody quite brings on the funk the way George Clinton does. Those of you within reasonable driving distance of Sayreville, NJ, that's where the Starland Ballroom is located, are wisely advised to buy your tickets now before they sell out...

The huge quartermile long asteroid that's coming our way today, towards planet earth, fortunately will not be crashing into our beloved piece of prime astral real estate. We lucked out this time. Scientist claim the big rock from Space is going to come within 202,000 miles of our humble abode. While 202,000 miles sounds like a heck of a long distance, truth is, in the realm of our Universe, it's considered just a block or two shy of our neighborhood, we're missing "impending doom" by not much outer-space distance at all. This means that we'll be able to conclude NHRA's 2011 season this weekend at Pomona. If the asteroid were to hit us today, naturally we'd all be upset (and most likely deceased), and there sure wouldn't be any chance of the Automobile Club of Southern California NHRA Finals taking place Nov 10-13. If earth was indeed the asteroid's target, we'd never get to see if it would be Matt Hagen, Jack Beckman, Cruz Pedregon, Mike Neff, Robert Hight, or even possibly Ron Capps taking the 2011 NHRA Funny Car championship. In Top Fuel we'd be left hanging as to whether Spencer Massey, Del Worsham, or Antron Brown would take top honors for the 2011 season. Those class championships among others would not be able to be properly played out if the asteroid, that just happens to be ironically and coincidentally as long as a drag strip was to make tragic contact with us mortal earthlings. See, sometimes you do get a break in this world of ours. Be thankful for that... Switching gears... I'd like to express my condolences regarding the recent death of GWAR guitarist Cory Smoot aka "Flattus Maximus". He was found dead on the band's tour bus just before they were going to cross over to Canada for some tour dates. This sort of reminds me of when we (Big Stick) were touring the U.S., and we played a club in Houston, Texas, where the night before, Shannon Hoon, the singer from the group Blind Melon was found dead in the bunk of their tour bus. Hoon's death was a result of drugs. It's still not clear what took the life of GWAR's Cory Smoot. You've got to try to keep your head on straight while on tour. My sympathy for the members of GWAR and Cory Smoot's family...

With CBS 60 Minutes commentator Andy Rooney passing away just a couple of days ago, I feel compelled to share and reflect some of my personal thoughts of the man. Andy Rooney's commentaries regarding life's large and small absurdities were a favorite feature of mine. Rooney claimed about himself, "I obviously have a knack for getting on paper what a lot of people have thought and didn't realize they thought", I like that. I'm even kind of happy the way some drag racing folks occasionally write me and say the same thing about me, I take that as one of the greatest compliments that someone in my line of work can receive... On the other side of the coin, I'm also aware that there's some close minded people who didn't like Andy Rooney's contributions to the 60 Minutes broadcast, I get that, some ignorant people thought that Rooney's brand of blunt observations had no place on the weekly broadcast--- And heck, when I first showed up on the drag racing internet, several years ago, some crusty and cantankerous blowhards felt the same way about me-- Once, one of them even wrote on the boards, "Hey lady, drag racing doesn't need an Andy Rooney!"-- HA!!-- And just like the way Andy Rooney would get "suspended" for times when he dared to "tell it like it like is", or at least how "he thought it was", and ruffle a few feathers, I too would catch heck from close minded drag racing web sites who weren't really interested in "truth", even though they, ahem, sure make an effort of, uh, "pretending" they do. When my writing would get a little bit on the controversial side, some folks just couldn't handle it-- Kind of like that famous Jack Nicholson line from A FEW GOOD MEN, when he shouts out, "You can't handle the Truth!!"... While I certainly didn't agree with everything Andy Rooney said over the years, as a matter of fact, I disagreed with him on a few choice issues, Andy Rooney still remains my kind of journalist and commentator. I believe we could use a little more "Rooney" and a lot less "blowhard" in this world of ours. Rest In Peace...

A few days back I blogged about Chevrolet celebrating their 100th anniversary, that blog prompted some folks from Chevy to contact me with some interesting tidbits of information that I thought I'd pass on to you. It seems that lots of drivers are coming to Chevrolet dealerships and trading in their imports for brand new Chevys. People are using their low-end import models, as well as their high-end and pricy imports as "trade ins" for new cars wearing the trusty Chevy "bowtie" insignia. The Chevy Malibu and Impala have become the new car of choice among many drivers who are ditching their, uh, "temperamental" imports, for the more reliable and "cost effective" (especially when it comes to repair bills) Chevrolet midsized models. Another factor that's bringing customers to their "neighborhood Chevrolet dealer" is the more "family friendly" environment that the dealerships are now providing for car shoppers. People who are shopping for new cars are growing tired of the stuffy "elite boutique" atmosphere that many of the import dealers project with their showrooms. Folks are flocking to Chevy dealers because of the more simplified and less stuffy approach that the brand's dealers are implementing, back to the basic baseball, apple pie and Chevrolet, "easy like Sunday morning" feeling you experience while shopping at your local Chevrolet dealership. Some Chevy dealers are serving fresh coffee, donuts, even chocolate candy, and providing kids with a well stocked playroom of toys, books, and video games, so that their parents will have the opportunity to be more focused, and not distracted by their kids while shopping for a new set of wheels. There's a real effort among Chevy dealers to step away from the hectic and impersonal "highway dealership" vibe that many of the import dealerships subscribe to. Chevy dealers are taking more of an "old school" American, "Norman Rockwell-esque" approach to selling cars at your local "neighborhood" dealership. I'm considering providing occasional "Chevy Dealer Updates" here on the blog, heck, don't be surprised if you see yours truly "Seeing the U.S.A." at the wheel of a brand new Chevrolet in 2012... I really like what the nice folks at Chevrolet headquarters AND at your local friendly neighborhood Chevrolet dealerships are doing to make for a better buying and driving experience-- It's invigorating. Finally, reasons for having real optimism for one of America's longest running automobile manufacturers...

Let's face it, culturally speaking, we as a nation often suffer from being immersed in a mainstream media induced stanky soup of social strychnine. Our priorities lean further towards worrying about whether or not Kim Kardashian will recover from her recent ten minute marriage, if the "baby" will be Justin Bieber's, or which pungent presidential hopeful is next in being the recipient of a slew of sexual harassment lawsuits... And as our concerns become more and more focused on Hollywood hyped hogwash and the like, it seems as if we're letting the important matters that REALLY affect our daily lives be ever so casually ignored. Kansas City International Raceway is about to get unceremoniously flushed down the toilet and steamrolled into a cesspool of the abyss by Kansas City's local political hacks. KCIR is a drag strip that's been part of the Kansas City community for over 40 years. The track has provided a safe and controlled environment for drag racers, a place for race fans to enjoy wholesome family racing entertainment, and also a place that's provided many jobs for track employees and those who work locally in the high performance and automotive aftermarket industry. So, while soooo many Americans are swept up in feeling sympathy for the Kardashian family spending $10 Million Dollars on a wedding for a marriage that almost instantaneously went bust, there's a 40+ year old drag strip in Kansas about to forever rot and rust. For all practical purposes, I don't believe there's any "saving" of the drag strip possible, the track's epitaph is probably being carved into a gravestone as we speak, however, all I ask is that as Americans, we pay a little more attention to matters like this as they are developing in our own communities, the kind of stuff that can REALLY affect us, and spend less time worrying about the hyped-up nonsensical hoopla that's being constantly shoved down our collective throats. Pay more attention to the stuff that really matters...

Today is "FEEDBACK FRIDAY", meaning I deal with emails that my assistant Stephanie and I receive from readers regarding my most recent blogs... Probably the blog that's roused up the most feedback this week, and possibly generated the most emails I've received since starting the blog was my Halloween drag racing tale of "Gooseface Gunzo" and his sultry Gina Lollobrigida lookalike sidekick "Gooseface Gloria". My tale of their unfortunate mishap after an unsuccessful day at the drags prompted feedback from some folks whom I never knew read the blog! Don't be surprised if you see the story of the 1960s drag racing duo's exploits and untimely eerie demise on a future episode of one of them TV ghost story shows!! WOW!!... Some of you emailed me regarding my blogs singing the praises of my local friends and drag racing heroes, like NHRA Vegas winners Eddie Krawiec, Tony Bartone, and Peter Biondo-- And my recognition of SHAKEDOWN AT E'TOWN promoter and Outlaw Pro Mod racer Dave Hance's recent career best 5.79/254mph pass at Maryland International Raceway-- However, as always, there were a few of you who voiced the opinion that I pay too much attention to the accomplishments of northeastern based racers, and not enough attention to racers from other regions of the nation-- Gee whiz, you can't blame me for giving credit to racers I know or who I'm familiar with, right?... Yesterday's blog regarding Chevrolet's 100th Birthday caused folks to write me. The hardcore Chevy racers and fans appreciated me recognizing the anniversary of the long running bowtie brand. Matt from Chicago wrote me that I should have included Dick "Mr. Chevrolet" Harrell in my list of great Chevy racers. I believe Matt is right about that. I apologize for missing a mention of any of the other Chevy heroes of the sport that have made history on the drag strip, however, there is a limit to the space of the blog, so unfortunately that does put a little restraint on my ability to name ALL the many warriors of drag racing's "Bowtie Brigade" over the years... Keep those emails comin', whether you agree or disagree with my opinions, I'm genuinely interested in your feedback... I just ask that you please keep your emails short and to the point, no rambling please...